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Information Resources Inc. is beefing up its effort to recruit and retain Hispanic households to its Shoppers' Hotline programming as its clients continue to show interest in the consumer group.

"We are redoubling our efforts to have an adequate sample size," says Larry Fisher, VP-consumer insights at IRI. "It is within a framework of our 55,000 panel that's currently up and running."

Mr. Fisher notes IRI is making it a priority to increase the number of participants as well as balance them within key metro markets. IRI also is tracking participants by country/region and level of acculturation.

"Our clients are really interested in learning more about Hispanic consumers, not only because they are growing as a group but because they are concentrated," says Mr. Fisher, who adds that households tend to have more members and "if you can win over a consumer from one of those households you have a huge number of consumers underlying that conversion."

Consumer loyalty in the Hispanic market has become legendary, says Mr. Fisher. He cites the example of Colgate toothpaste, No. 1 in the Hispanic market vs. Crest, No. 1 overall.

"There are significant differences in their purchasing patterns. You may have a buyer for life that is really worth recruiting and retaining . . . that's part

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